E-Mail Lists Anti-Semitic Incidents in France, Calls for Boycott

March 04, 2009

A widely forwarded e-mail with "Frightening News from France" in the subject line lists alleged anti-Semitic attacks in France and calls for a boycott of French goods. This e-mail first circulated in early 2004 and is still making rounds today. The email purports to be from "a Jew living in France" and lists several serious incidents of violent anti-Semitism.

Many, but not all, of the incidents listed have been confirmed.  However, both the e-mail's wording and its continuing circulation on the Internet misleadingly suggest that the incidents occurred recently, when in fact they largely occurred in 2002, during a period of rapidly rising anti-Semitism in France (some of the incidents referred to are documented here).

The book concerning September 11 which is referred to was written by the conspiracy theorist Thierry Meyssan and published in 2002; while rightly the subject of concern in both the U.S. and France, the book is no longer on the best-seller list in France.

ADL takes conditions on the ground in France and other European countries extremely seriously and monitors events daily.  The French government has responded robustly to anti-Semitism through security, judicial and educational measures.

The League does not sanction boycott initiatives directed against France or any other country.

For an updated list of incidents in France and around the world, see "Global Anti-Semitism: Selected Incidents from Around the World."